Fan clutch

I was told by a friend that if I am able to spin my fan by hand then my fan clutch is shot. This will cause my engine to overheat.

Is that correct?


depends on what car.

the fan can be turned by hand, it doesn’t get ‘engaged’ when running until the temp climbs and the clutch ‘grabs.’

some cars have an electric clutch. some have an electric powered fan, independent of the fan belts.

(i am sure you have heard of most cars nowadays having the warning near the radiator)… “keep hands clear of cooling fan, it may start at any time” this is because there are temp sensors which kick in when the temp climbs, even with the engine off.

have you ever been walking in a parking lot in the summer and heard a car fan start when no one is in the car? this is the temp switch kicking on the fan and there aren’t even keys in the ignition!

So that means the clutch is not engaging due to wear and tear. I have a van that is about 13 to 14 years old

Like Cappy said, the clutch is disengaged when the motors not hot, so you’d have to do this with the motor hot-- and it has to be pretty darn hot for the clutch to engage all the way. In the winter, it may never engage all the way at all. Also, by far the most common mode of failure for them is for them to stick on, not off. Also, if you have a vehicle with V-belts, you usually can turn even a directly coupled fan because the pulley slides on the belt, although if this is too easy, you may need to tighten the belt.

The way it worked on my Pathfinders…was there was a coil inside the clutch. As it got hot the coil expanded and disengaged the clutch. When it cooled the clutch was engaged. Very simple design and it worked great.

what brand auto. van don’t mean much. year make model.